Vladimir Žikić, Andjeljko Petrović, Ana Ivanović


We used landmark-based geometric morphometrics to explore and quantify the forewing shape variation between asexual and sexual lineages of Lysiphlebus fabarum aphid parasitoids. We found a significant divergence in wing size and wing shape between the two reproductive lineages. Static allometry, which denotes size-related shape changes measured in different individuals at the same developmental stage within a population or species, accounts for the significant amount of variation in wing shape within each lineage (11.16 % in asexual, 7.5% in sexual). The allometric shape changes appear to be lineage specific, i.e., the allometric slopes of wing shape significantly diverge between lineages. Such a pattern indicates that asexual and sexual lineages differ in the covariation pattern of the wing shape. Further studies on larger datasets, including other Lysiphlebus taxa and closely related groups, would shed more light on the pattern of morphological variation and the significance of the reproductive mode on the morphological evolution of parasitoid wasps.

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